how to livestream on youtube

How to livestream on YouTube

This article discusses how to livestream on YouTube. It is the latest in our series on how to start a YouTube channel. To livestream is to broadcast an event online for live viewing (Merriam Webster 2023).

Live streaming on YouTube is a great way for music creators to connect with your audience in real time.

YouTube has a variety of tools to help music creators to manage streams and engage with viewers. One of these is the live chat feature.

Three ways to livestream on YouTube

There are three ways to live stream on YouTube. Music creators can livestream with:

  • a mobile device.
  • a webcam.
  • an encoder.

The easiest options for beginners are the webcam and mobiledevice. These do not need any major preparation and allow one to quickly go live. Encoders are more suitable for more advanced users who require greater customization of the live stream.

how to livestream on youtube

Livestream on YouTube with a mobile device

These are the requirements to livestream on YouTube with a mobile device. You need:

  • at least 1,000 subscribers.
  • A phone or tablet with a camera.

Mobile livestreams permit greater flexibility since you can stream and capture moments or events on the go.

Livestream on YouTube with a webcam

Webcam streaming requires a computer with a webcam. There is no need for additional software or additional equipment. Webcam streaming is ideal for live music events or streams where you are stationary in one location.

Livestream on YouTube with an encoder

Encoders are third party software that allow you to capture content from your desktop, camera, microphone, images and more. This content can then be sent to YouTube live to be streamed to your audience.

Encoder streaming is commonly used for gaming, sporting events, concerts, or conferences. It is ideal for streams of gameplay and overlays. Encoders can be used along with special hardware like pre-amps, microphones and cameras.

OBS Studio is a free encoder that can be used for YouTube livestreams.

Get it here for free.

how to livestream on youtube

How to prepare for a livestream on YouTube

Now that you are aware of three ways to stream, you can plan the kind of content that you can stream with any of these methods.

There are some keys to keep in mind when livestreaming on YouTube:

  1. Plan the stream ahead of the scheduled time.
  2. Test out your sound and visuals beforehand with an Unlisted or Private stream. This will also help you to edit the look and sound of your stream.
  3. Let your audience know when you plan on going live by scheduling the stream ahead of time.
  4. Check the content of the stream for adherence to YouTube’s Community Guidelines and Terms of Service. For example, make sure that any music you play is not copyrighted. Copyright owners can place a copyright strike against your channel if they do not permit usage of their music on YouTube.
  5. Verify your channel before the stream. Channel verification is done by telephone number verification.. Read our post on YouTube channel verification.
  6. Enable your channel for live streaming. This process takes up to 24 hours in some instances. It is therefore important to do this in advance of your stream in order to prevent delays. To do this
    • go to while signed in.
    • In the top-right corner, click the Create icon
    • click “Go live.”
    • If this is your first livestream, a prompt will indicate that YouTube is verifying your account for live-streaming access.
    • once the 24 hour waiting period has passed, you’ll become enabled to start live streaming.
    • Once you’re all set up, you can choose how you want to go live on YouTube.

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